Spicy Spareribs

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 75 minutes
Servings: 6

The barbecue sauce can be made up to 2 days in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. This versatile sauce is also excellent on grilled chicken, baby back ribs or beef ribs.


  • 1 Tbs. canola oil
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 can (14 1/2 oz.) diced tomatoes in puree
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 3 Tbs. bourbon or apple cider
  • 2 Tbs. cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 Tbs. finely chopped chipotle chilies in adobo
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 6 lb. pork spareribs
  • 2 cups water


Make the sauce
Preheat an oven to 350°F.

In a saucepan over medium heat, warm the oil. Add the garlic and sauté until softened, about 1 minute. Stir in the tomatoes, molasses, bourbon, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, chipotle chilies, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Bring just to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, until moderately thick, 15 to 20 minutes.

Roast the ribs
Meanwhile, cut the ribs into 3-rib portions. Arrange the ribs on a rack in a roasting pan large enough to hold them comfortably. Pour the water into the pan and cover the pan with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Roast the ribs for 35 minutes, then increase the oven temperature to 375°F. Uncover the pan and brush the ribs on both sides with the sauce. Continue to roast, uncovered, for 15 minutes. Brush the ribs again and continue to roast until the ribs are tender, about 10 minutes more, for a total roasting time of about 1 hour. Divide the ribs among dinner plates and serve immediately, passing additional sauce at the table. Serves 6.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast Series, Simple Suppers, by Melanie Barnard (Oxmoor House, 2007).

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